Have you ever been literally stuck in a rut? How did you get yourself and your car out of it? Would you know what to do to prevent getting into dangerous road situations in winter? How can you keep your cool when driving in the summer?
From hot and humid days on the highways to wet and slick road conditions in the winter, here are some of the top tips for staying safe and comfortable on the road in any kind of weather.
Take the Wheel
There are tried-and-tested road rules and driving practices that automotive professionals and road safety experts will swear by. The car industry has changed over the years, and along with new cars, components, and automotive innovations come significant changes in the way people drive their cars.
Generations of real-life studies, investigations, and surveys on the use of roads and related aspects have also contributed to the development of functional road systems, laws, and regulations to ensure that the motoring public is kept safe on the road. Safety research has been and is still conducted by both private and public organizations to keep motorists away from the hazards of driving. Still, road traffic-related injuries remain the leading cause of death for children and young adults aged 5 to 29 years. Every year, 1.35 million people still suffer a terrible fate due to road traffic crashes.
That is why owning a car comes with the responsibility of caring for and using it properly. Vehicle owners must be mindful of how to take care of their vehicle and ensure that it runs in tip-top shape. Aside from securing a reliable car insurance package, it is every car owner’s responsibility to see to the proper maintenance and use of their cars.
Driving a well-maintained vehicle on the road will already cut down the possibility of car breakdowns that may lead to accidents and deaths. Observance of road rules and basic road courtesy will ensure a more enjoyable and safe driving experience.
To help spread awareness and ultimately save lives, we have put together a simple guide to caring for and enjoying your vehicle in different situations. Specific tips are included, especially when driving in different road conditions to keep you and your family safe on the road, whatever the weather may be.
Here are some of the general and seasonal driving tips that you should take note of:
A. Year-round Tips
a. Buckle Up.
Do this all the time before you even start the car. Fasten your seatbelts and ask everyone in the car to do so as well. In 2017 alone, 47% of passengers who were seated unrestrained were killed in motor vehicle crashes.
b. Keep Kids Safe In and Around the Car
Never leave your child unattended inside or around a vehicle. More than 50 children died of heatstroke in 2019 because they were either left alone or got trapped in a hot car. Make sure that kids are properly buckled and are using the appropriate child seat for their age. Use child safety locks to prevent them from accidentally opening windows or doors.
c. Do not forget to care for your pets, too.
Make sure that you also care for your pets just as you would a child. Do not leave pets alone and unattended, especially in a hot car, to prevent death from heatstroke. Place them in proper pet carriers and ensure that they are also securely fastened.
d. Follow a regular car maintenance schedule.
Do not ignore the scheduled preventive maintenance schedule of your vehicle. Make sure to bring your car to an authorized service center to have it checked for any irregularities. It is best to be more proactive when it comes to the condition of your car so you can avoid car troubles on the road.
e. Observe traffic rules.
Always observe traffic rules and regulations. Practice proper courtesy on the road as well for other road users. Doing so will help you avoid accidents and keep roads safer.
f. Keep emergency numbers handy.
Make sure that you have a list of emergency numbers within reach. Police and fire station hotlines, emergency and roadside assistance, as well as numbers of towing companies, hospitals, or your family doctor are all helpful in case you encounter emergencies while on the road.
g. Always have a first-aid kit.
You must have a first-aid kit in your car at all times. Aside from a kit that you can use when someone gets hurt or injured, you should also have a travel car kit with you. This will ensure that you or your car can get immediate aid while waiting for first responders.
B. Summer and Spring Season
a. Check your air conditioning (AC) system.
When driving under the summer sun, it is best to make sure that you have your AC system checked before you go. This will ensure that you will have a cool and comfortable drive. Also, check the car’s cabin filter. Pollen can seep through if the filter in your car is broken, so it is best to have it checked and replaced when needed.
b. Pay attention to your tires.
Check your tires for good tread. Make sure all tires, including the spare tire, are properly inflated. You won’t want to get stuck in the middle of nowhere with a faulty tire.
c. Make sure you have summer essentials in the car.
Proper sunglasses, sunscreen, umbrellas, and other summer clothing or accessories can help make your road trip more comfortable. Wear a correct pair of sunglasses that is not too dark, so you can still see the road, but still offers protection from glare.
C. Fall and Winter Seasons
a. Check your windshield wipers.
Make sure to check your windshield wipers if they are already streaking. Replace when needed so you can avoid visibility issues when driving in rain or snow.
b. Prepare your tires.
Aside from checking tire treads and inflation, you should also have your tire chains checked and ready. If you can, you can also shift to using winter tires.
c. Keep your fuel from freezing.
Make sure that your fuel tank is filled at least half full so you can avoid gas line freeze.
d. Observe winter driving tips.
You might want to warm your engine first before driving in frigid weather. Also, avoid using cruise control when driving in wintry situations so you can have better control of the wheel. Observe speed limits and a safe driving distance.
Driving your car would be most enjoyable if you and your loved ones are safe and comfortable. Observing proper road rules and practicing responsible vehicle care and maintenance will surely enhance the driving experience. When you follow the above-mentioned tips, you can look forward to a rewarding ride and drive and have a more pleasurable time on the road.